Culture compass: Pretty girls, soul books, and “Melodrama”

Gunthar Reising

Friday: Twin Cities Jazz Festival

Friday marks day two of the Twin Cities Jazz Festival, a festival credited with developing Lowertown in Saint Paul. The second half of the day lineup features various jazz artists at 20 venues throughout
St. Paul. This is a perfect night for the aficionados as well as the jazz-curious.

Where: Various venues in Saint Paul

When: Noon – midnight, Thursday – Saturday.

Cost: Free

Saturday: Sexiest Drinks on the St. Croix

Why is it called “Sexiest Drinks on the St. Croix?” The answer isn’t exactly clear. What is known is that this party is the gathering of 800 people — entirely on the water. Bring a tube, drinks and friends, and float inside a circle of boats in the middle of the St. Croix River while listening to live bands on a floating stage. Musical guests include country singer GB Leighton, and funk band The Good, The Bad and The Funky.

Where: St. Croix River, Stillwater

When: 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Cost: Free

Sunday: Yoga in the Park

After a night (or two) of heavy drinking, detox your body with some downward-facing dog. The class, led by instructors at Twin Cities Yoga Cooperative, is a seventy-five minute course on the South side of Lake Calhoun between the walk and bike paths. Beginners will not be judged too harshly.

Where: Lake Calhoun, W. Calhoun Pkwy. and Washburn Ave. S., Minneapolis

When: 10:30 a.m.

Cost: Voluntary donations

CULTURE TO CONSUME

Listen to this: “Melodrama” by Lorde

Four years ago, a 16-year-old Lorde gave us her debut album, “Pure Heroine.” Now, Lorde has released her sophomore album, “Melodrama.” As the name implies, the album unravels slowly to humming string instruments, simple, catchy beats and magnetic vocals. This fluorescent album follows Lorde’s journey into adulthood and through messy romances, from which the artist emerges with complexity and grace.

Read this: “Tenth of December: Stories” by George Saunders

No class means there’s time to read things that are actually enjoyable, and Saunders’ “Tenth of December” is worth considering for a summer read. Despite the chilly title, Saunders’ stories are heartfelt and hilarious. He aims his satire at corporate America, but never once condescends its workers, who try desperately to navigate the labyrinths of bureaucracy. Saunders’ clear yet energetic prose carries the reader through a variety of situations, from drug induced chivalric adventures to small town charity auctions.

Listen to this: “Pretty Girls Like Trap Music” by 2 Chainz

2 Chainz’ new album “Pretty Girls Like Trap Music” features artists Drake, Migos, Gucci Mane, Nicki Minaj and more. The album features some sure-fire summer hits like “4 AM” ft. Travis Scott and “Blue Cheese” ft. Migos. Living in the shadow of Kendrick Lamar’s “DAMN.,” this might not be the best album of the summer… but it’s perfect for house parties.